Otis College of Art and Design logo
  • Otis Fine Arts hosts a Visiting Artist lecture series featuring John Houck, a Los Angeles-based artist. Read more about him here.
    Contact: Soo Kim, skim@otis.edu
  • Jesse Benson (b. 1978) is an artist based in Los Angeles. Benson's complex practice is driven by the perversion of roles and representation that characterize his generational moment. In obsessively "skillful" objects like the Bureau Paintings, Catalog Page Paintings, Future Sculptures, and Repaintings, Benson constantly questions the authenticity of the document, the function of style, and the value of both art and artist. Benson is equally committed to a curatorial/organizational practice that openly overlaps and inspires his object production.

  • The Architecture/Landscape/Interiors Department at OTIS College of Art and Design is pleased to announce a lecture by Nick SeierupPrincipal | Design Director of Perkins+Will, Los Angeles, on Thursday, December 3, 2015.


  • Marisa Silver is the author most recently of the New York Times bestselling novel Mary Coin. Her other books include the novels No Direction Home and The God of War (a finalist for a Los Angeles Times Book Prize), as well as two story collections, Babe in Paradise and Alone with You. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker and been included in many anthologies, including The Best American Short Stories and The O. Henry Prize Stories. Silver lives in Los Angeles.

  • Jesse Lerner is a filmmaker based in Los Angeles.  His short films Natives (1991, with Scott Sterling), T.S.H. (2004) and Magnavoz (2006) and the feature-length experimental documentaries Frontierland/Fronterilandia (1995, with Rubén Ortiz-Torres), Ruins (1999) The American Egypt (2001), Atomic Sublime (2010) and The Absent Stone (2013, with Sandra Rozental) have won numerous prizes at film festivals in the United States, Latin America and Japan.

  • Otis faculty member Dana Berman Duff will present a program of short 16mm and digital films in her "Catalogue" series.

  • Performing the Grid is an exhibition that brings together an intergenerational group of artists and cultural producers that utilize the grid as a performative strategy to examine, challenge and position philosophical, political, social, domestic, corporeal, and mythical perspectives. Rosalind Kraus famously wrote that the grid “functions to declare the modernity of modern art” in her 1979 essay, Grids.


Graduate Public Practice

Engage the world.

The program, under the leadership of Suzanne Lacy, the renowned artist, educator, theorist of socially engaged public art and author, prepares students to re-invent traditional media-specific ways of thinking about art making. Los Angeles--global center of public practices by artists and collaborative groups--is its dynamic setting, with studios in the historic 18th Street Art Center. From the beginning, students are encouraged to find themselves as emerging professionals within this vast human and spatial geography.

Interview with Suzanne Lacy about the Crystal Quilt project at Tate Tanks, fall 2012

The only educational program in the Southern California region dedicated exclusively to providing artists with advanced skills for working in the public sphere, the Program focuses on both collaborative and individual art production. Entering students design a unique educational plan to fit their interests, with the latitude to experience both community and studio contexts. Public practice – also called participatory art, community art, public art, situational art or social sculpture – consists of media including video, performance, drawing, photography, sculpture and web-based projects. Students start with a collaborative project - one that results in an exhibition or public presentation - led by artists such as Andrea Bowers, Suzanne Lacy and Rick Lowe.Tthey meet and interact with recognized professionals such as Mel Chin and Sam Durant, and network with artists, critics and curators from around the world. Students travel individually or as a group as part of their curriculum, exploring cultures as diverse as a small farming town in the San Joaquin Valley or hurricane-ravaged New Orleans.

Each student’s learning plan includes a menu of skills classes in different art media, theories of public practice, and internships with artists such as Kim Abeles. Their self-defined curriculum provides opportunities for one-on-one studies with artists such as Rachel Rosenthal, and L.A. Urban Rangers. Students can take classes in other graduate programs - writing, fine arts, and graphic design, and in other departments across the College. The full range of Otis shops, faculty, courses, and library is available for students' production.

Visiting artists and faculty provide rigorous and supportive one-on-one and group critiques. Recent visitors have included Mel Chin, Nav Haq, Sally Tallant, Martha Rosler, Future Farmers, Nao Bustamante, Dolores Huerta, Gronk, Fritz Haeg, Karen Moss, Carol Stakenas, Olga Koumoundoros, L.A. Urban Rangers, Edgar Arceneaux, and S.A. Bachman. more information on visitors

Students worked in Laton, California, supported by a planning grant from the Ford Foundation, watch the video. Recent L.A. exhibitions include "Love in a Cemetery" at the 18th St Arts Center, and "Actions and Conversations" at the Municipal Art Gallery, Barnsdall Park.

Contact program coordinator Consuelo Velasco Montoya: cvelasco@otis.edu or 310 846-2610.
For admissions inquiries, contact admissions@otis.edu or 310 665-6800.
Online application